Large water-powered millstones have also been found in the Walbrook stream and a possible watermill excavated from the River Fleet (VAL88). There was no shortage, therefore, of machinery in London for producing stone-ground flour and these various methods must have produced large quantities of flour for a large hungry urban population.
Bread was mainly made from spelt wheat. In a bakery at Poultry, deposits of cereal bran suggested that wholemeal flour was being sieved to make finer flour, white flour being regarded as higher quality. It is also known that chalk could be added to the bread dough to whiten it. Large wooden dough troughs were also found in the building thought to be for preparing the dough prior to cooking.
Bread ovens were built as low round brick or tile structures which were heated up, burning wood or charcoal, then cleared out and the bread put in using long-handled spatulas. In a bake-house that pre-dated the building of the second forum near Fenchurch Street, there were as many as six large brick ovens.
Another baker’s shop, excavated during the Jubilee Line excavations in Borough High Street, Southwark (BGH95), had a large store of wheat and barley, prior to the building burning down in the Boudican attack.
Other grain stores have been found and, with them, the presence of the granary weevil, a beetle that fed on stored grain just as it was beginning to rot. These creatures only appear in Britain after the Romans began importing large amounts of grain from the eastern Mediterranean.